tv MSNBC Live With Hallie Jackson MSNBC April 26, 2019 7:00am-8:00am PDT
young, vineerant wombrant woman. president trump on his way to indiana and talking russia, the economy, north korea, the special counsel and much more. watch. >> i never told don mcgahn to fire mueller. if i wanted to fire mueller, i would have done it myself. it's very simple. i have the right to. frankly, whether i did or he did, we have the absolute right to fire mueller. in the meantime, i didn't do it. i'm a student of history. i see what you get when you fire people and it's not good. but there would have been nothing wrong with firing him. legally i had absolute right to fire, but i never told don mcgahn to fire mueller. >> we've got our team here covering that story and the many others that we're going to bring you over the next hour. our team covering the story and i want to start at the white house with my colleague kristen welker on set. along with nbc national reporter carol lee.
i think we have your shot up as you now raced back in from the south lawn to the north lawn and president trump not talking once, but twice. stopping on the south lawn under the wing and plenty to say. >> touting the strong economy today, hallie, but defiant upon leaving the white house. as he so often is as he heads off to speak to the nra. he covered a range of different topics. everything from former vice president joe biden announcing he's running for office. president trump saying that he thinks he will beat him and, also, answering a number of questions about whether he's going to allow his current and former officials to testify before congress. as you know, this is an intensifying battle between the white house and capitol hill and president trump increasingly saying, look, we need to move on. we have given you a lot of information and mueller was able to ask questions of don mcgahn the former white house counsel of more than 30 hours. the mueller report is out and
now it's time to turn the page. because democrats saying the opposite saying they have an oversight rule here and they are not letting up either. now, i know that we are getting some sound cut from president trump and we're going to bring what he said to you as soon as we do get that. but, bottom line, hallie, the president defiant upon leaving saying i never told don mcgahn to fire mueller. president trump also asked about the fact that former vice president joe biden has gotten some criticism because he would essentially be the oldest person who would take office if he were to win. president trump touting the fact that he feels he is a young man. so, really setting the stakes as joe biden starts campaigning and the democratic primary and we do have that sound on mueller and congressional inquiries. let's take a listen. i think mcgahn was in there for 30 hours. who heard of such a thing?
i said i want everybody testifying. obviously, mcgahn thought he testified fine because he was with the administration for a long time after that and i think he said he was just the appointment of judges by the administration. but i let everybody testify. there has never, ever been transparency like this. just so you understand, so we have a great -- excuse me. we get the ruling, which i knew we were going to get because i have nothing to do with russia and the campaign. so, we get a ruling and no collusion. we essentially get a ruling, no obstruction based on the facts our great attorney general made an immediate decision. there was no obstruction. so, we have no collusion, no obstruction. we had total transparency. we gave 1.4 million documents,
if you can believe such a ridiculous thing. 500 people testified. we had 18 people that were trump haters. that includes mr. mueller. >> if that sounds familiar, hallie, that is because we heard this from the president and his legal team since that redacted version of the mueller report came out. they are bottom lining this based on what the attorney general said and the president saying it's time to move on. so, again, this is an intensifying battle between the president and lawmakers on capitol hill who said they have the responsibility of oversight and not let up on their request for more information. >> kristen, stand by i want you to hear as i bring in lexi and carol. the verbal version of his tweets that he has been putting out this week, he also talked about his response to charlottesville, which is something that has come up in the wake of joe biden's announcement. >> and he, once again, took a
very, i don't even know how to describe it at this point. he did not acknowledge what happened in charlottesville in a way that everyone else sees what happens there. he went back to robert e. lee and the removal of confederate statues. he said that generals he has spoken with say he's one of the best generals. he took it in this direction that, in fact, kind of underscored at least, you know, from the biden folks perspective for sure why the vice president chose to bring that up because it shows that the way that the divide and how this president thinks about these sorts of issues versus the way that when you saw what we saw in joe biden's video that he believes the country believes he should be thinking about these sorts of issues. the president had an opportunity and he has gone exactly where he has gone before. >> the economy, which, by the
way, just to explain to folks, he is not supposed to talk about until after an hour it comes out. at 9:50 talked about it and he definitely talked much more, when you look at the time of it, much more about don mcgahn and the mueller report and an indication to me based on my years covering this president that that is under his skin in a serious way. >> i couldn't agree more. the president loves cultural wars and political wars and he loves using that to his advantage. whether or not that actually is what happens. whether or not he advances his own political agenda because he's coming out and defy against these things. he knows not only does it fire up his base, but makes him feel a sense of exoneration whether or not what he is saying is true. he knows he can use these things to exploit some sort of war or divide to advance his own agenda and i think it's clear, like you said, that it's totally under his skin and that's why he's
behaving this way. >> stand by for one second. i want to bring in john brennan who is joining me on set. thank you for being here, as always. we already had 25 questions for you. he said he never told don mcgahn to fire mueller. to the spence counsel team and he refused to recede from his recollection repeatedly said the president did, in fact, direct him to have mueller removed. >> that is one of the biggest problems with mr. trump. what can you believe that he says. whether he is denying that he asked or told don mcgahn to fire jim comey or the united states did not pay north korea $2 million to get otto warmbier back. he has no credibility whatsoever. this is a real issue not just in terms of the american people and also the international community. what can they put stock in as far as what the president and
the united states says about these very, very important issues. >> the president has been talkative lately including on sean hannity overnight and his first interview in depth and he evoked your name and i want to play what he had to say. >> i really say now we have to get down because this was a coup, this was an attempted o r overthrow of the united states government. these are sick people. these are sick, sick people. let's see what happens with mccabe and comey and brennan and clapper. they were in on the act and let's see what happens and let's see how high it goes up because it's inconceivable when it goes to clapper, brennan, comey these people, i would imagine some other people may be higher up also knew about it and maybe a lot higher up. >> that is the president alleging that you, among others, were in on the act for some type of overthrow. how do you respond?
>> i don't think, mr. trump claiming there was this effort to try to prevent him from being elected or to try to unseat him. i welcome any type of continued investigation in terms of what we did during that time while we were in government. i testified in front of congress. >> you would do it again? >> absolutely i would do it again. people have called for me to do it. rand paul and others make these algashz legations and then cert networks will propagate that. >> i wonder if one of the allegations're talking about, it was brennan who insisted that the unverified and fake steele, it was the cia pushing for the dossier to be included in the reporter in the underlying investigation. >> that's 180 degrees from the truth. cia not to have it taken into account at all in that
intelligence community assessment. i testified in front of congress and i continue to do it. something jim comey and the fbi thought it was appropriate that mr. trump, who was going to become the president of the united states, would be aware of this report that is circulating and how it could be exploited by the russians or others to undermine this government. >> made message of the past administration in his speech overnight. i want to play for you what he had to say. >> so critical about that russia investigation. the previous administration chose not to publicize the full story about russian and computer hackers and how they relate to russia's broader strategy to undermine america. >> the deputy attorney general blaming the administration that you served in for not publicizing the threat from russia enough. does he have, at all, a legitimate point there? >> i don't believe so. for two reasons. one, the last administration put out an intelligence community
assessment and tried to be as transparent as possible about what the russians were doing. could we, in fact, reveal all of our knowledge during the period of time leading up to the election, which could expose our sources and methods and our ability to monitor what the russians were doing. we had a delicate balance here. before the obama administration left office, we put out everything we could and, unfortunately, this administration and donald trump refuses to continue to acknowledge what the russians did and to take steps to prevent them from doing it in the future. i truly suspect that donald trump would not mind if the russians interfered, again, if it was going to advance his prospects for re-election. >> 2018 was just a dress rehearsal for 2020. >> they're going to be very persistent in this area. >> director brennan, stand by for one second. i want to go to kristen welker. north korea, this reporting, of course, that north korea issued a bill to the tune of $2 million to the united states.
the president now says, i never paid a penny of it, right? >> that's right. defiant on that point, as well, hallie. insisting the united states did not pay one cent to north korea for the care of otto warmbier. take a listen to what he had to say. >> we did not pay money for our great otto. no money paid. a fake news report that money was paid. i haven't paid money for any hostage and i have gotten approximately 20 or 21 out. we don't pay money for hostages. >> the president did not deny that north korea sent the u.s. that bill. and, of course, the u.s. officials won't comment on that level of detail. the backdrop to all of this, of course, the nuclear talks between united states and north korea have fallen apart and then that stunning image that we got yesterday of president putin meeting with kim jong-un. so, that is undoubtedly
something that the white house is watching very closely. >> and we will watch today when president trump meets with abe. we know north korea will be on the agenda for the talks at the white house. that is where i will see you in a couple of minutes. issue this invoice for the care of otto warmwier and is it surprising that the president directed his envoy to sign that pledge, even if they didn't pay the money? >> none of that is surprising. so, it's not surprising at all. but donald trump denied that he paid stormy dannal aiels until s found out that he did. >> do ayou think he paid north korea? >> he has a very difficult time telling the truth. i'm hoping that we didn't pay, but we'll have to see whether or not that is the fact.
former cia director john brennan. thank you. the now professed russian agent who finds herself on the verge of heading to prison and getting deported for trying to infiltrate. president trump comparing himself to joe biden. new digs as his campaign launch and a couple snags. we'll talk about that after the break. along with support, chantix is proven to help you quit. with chantix you can keep smoking at first and ease into quitting. chantix reduces the urge so when the day arrives, you'll be more ready to kiss cigarettes goodbye. when you try to quit smoking, with or without chantix, you may have nicotine withdrawal symptoms. stop chantix and get help right away if you have changes in behavior or thinking, aggression, hostility, depressed mood, suicidal thoughts or actions, seizures, new or worse heart or blood vessel problems, sleepwalking,
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white house south lawn this morning. he hit a lot of topics including one of the 2020 race and his newest democratic opponent, joe biden. the president predicting he will beat the former vp easily. it comes as new reporting suggests perhaps the opposite that the former vp is the democrat that the president is most concerned about come 2020. as for biden, we're waiting on the campaign to tell us how much campaign cash they brought in during the first 24 hours. first phone call two decades in the making between joe biden and anita hill. why she is saying it wasn't enough. joining us now, mike one of just four reporters inside a biden fund-raiser last night and spokesperson for a progressive group who announced opposition to biden's presidency come 2020 and also with us alexia and carol lee. we start with you on all things related to biden. you were in the room for the fund-raiser and biden talked
about the fund-raiser with anita hill. >> it was interesting that the campaign itself did release the fact that they spoke at all. it was without any sense of timing or what the nature of the call was announcing that he had spoken with anita hill. we did see this conversation that the "new york times" had an interview with her. i want to take you inside the fund-raiser. the most we have heard from joe biden since he launched his campaign since that initial video was, in fact, behind closed doors at that fund-raiser. we know he framed and reinforced this idea that this campaign is very much one of the battle for the soul of the nation. he said the charlottesville incident was a real epiphany moment for him and raised the concerns of the president tearing down the guard rails. we have a little bit of a
preview of that. we will hear about the middle class and more than just about restoring the middle class but restoring this idea of economic dignity. the economy is much more than the gdp and we lost touch with the concerns of most americans. so, it was a real interesting moment and he also said, hallie, something that we're all mindful of as we cover joe biden in the weeks and months ahead. i am excited about this race and i promise you i will always be honest with you for good or for bad. >> let me bring in, let me play for you what the president said on the white house south lawn about joe biden. >> i think we beat him easily. i am a young, vibrant man. i look at joe and i don't know. >> so, the president feels like he has the perhaps age advantage, although mathematically. >> math. >> one interesting point about the two of them, neither of them
drink alcohol, which is an interesting thing. look, if trump wasn't worried about biden, we wouldn't be hearing so much about biden from trump. and he should be in the sense that if you look at how he won in 2016, he got some votes in these key states across the midwest and pennsylvania and ohio and places like that. and those are the exact voters that someone like joe biden appeals to. that he's always appealed to. and trump's base is so, you know, he has, he doesn't have a huge amount of support already and he hasn't managed to expand that base and if he's going up against somebody who can get into that group of voters who got you over the top to win, then that's a threat. >> also, so much easier to run against an opponent than it is to run against yourself, which is the choice he's facing right now. he loves identifying and
chairicturing these people immigrants or people he is going to be running against in 2020 as a way to bolster his candidacy and the easiest way to do that right now is on superficial things like joe biden's age or calling him sleepy, which is another way to call him old. >> i have to correct myself here, the former vice president talked aboutt the phone call wih anita hill, he did not. heather haier's mom. she was out this morning on cnn. i want to play for you what heyer's mom had to say. >> we talked a lot about bereavement because he lost a son and a wife and daughter. i think he said something about i would have reached out sooner but i wasn't sure how you would feel and i commented, yes, i noticed you didn't mention her name because you hadn't contacted me. so, we sort of acknowledged that
much. >> to this conversation between susan and the former vice president as he has made charlottesville a central point of his campaign launch. >> i think it's really important to bring up charlottesville. a pivotal moment in our country's history. i also think just to respond to some things said earlier. conventional wisdom about joe biden's collective and he has a lot of the fear around young people and the progressive movement about a joe biden presidency is that he does not have core appeals to a large constituency of the democratic party that didn't turn out in 2016, especially young people. people of color. union households and now he has vulnerabilities with democratic women. i think a lot of these, one major reason why democrats lost in 2016 was that voters were not that energized about those voters were not that energized about the candidate and the message and i think on issue after issue, joe biden has chosen the wrong side of history on where the democratic party is
going. so, if you look at the major decisions that he's made over his political career whether it's being the architect of policies that led the u.s. to having the largest prison population in the world or the anita hill hearings or the vote for the war in iraq and whether it's standing up for credit card companies and standing up for wall street and in a moment that needed leadership. he has been on the wrong side of those decisions and i think he has a lot of vulnerabilities around electability. we hear electability concerns around bernie sanders and kamala harris and i think joe biden has concerns. >> stands in near opposition to where the energy in the democratic party is. day two of his campaign. why not listen to what he has to say now first? >> in part because joe biden has been in politics for 40 years and those key decisions he's made, i don't know how he's going to explain to voters who
have been affected by his decisions on mass incarceration, the war in iraq and financial deregulation and unfair trade deals. those are concerns that need to be raised that are part of his political career. he is leaning on his experience as a democratic leader as his reason for running. but i think that there are fresh voices in the democratic party who are bringing new things to the table and part of the reason we have 20 minutes in the mix at this time is because people at the top of the party haven't made room for fresh voices in the in an election if the status quo or legitimate fears of that being, again, the way that 2020 is decided. there is a lot of things to already go on joe biden, particularly things he said about, you know, the progressive movement and about young people and he has been historically a centrist and moderate in the party. >> alexa one thing that he mentioned is the fight on credit card companies versus not.
something elizabeth warren very notably talked about and how you see other democrats being strategic about the is. >> the one thing that joe biden could do in spite of his record that is certainly not meeting the moment of 2019's democratic party is lay out specific plans and policies in a similar way that elizabeth warren is doing. >> democrats who do feel that the obama/biden years were good for them. >> absolutely. when i talk to swing voters, they say they want a sense of normalcy and i think joe biden could provide that sense of normalcy. >> thank you. appreciate it. much more coming up including the woman who conspired to infiltrate the nra and the admitted russian agent set to be sentenced. live to the courthouse for the late latest. the coast guard lieutenant accused of plotting attacks against top democrats and supreme court justices and members of the media being
released ahead of detention ahead of his trial. chr assange should be released because they did not meet the legal standard to keep him behind bars. remember the pictures of stockpile of weapons there. but he hasn't been charged with anything related to terrorism. we'll be right back. let's take a look at some numbers: 4 out of 5 people who have a stroke, their first symptom... is a stroke. 80 percent of all strokes and heart disease? preventable. and 149 dollars is all it takes to get screened
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we're back with you this morning with a kind of strange split screen moment. the president on his way to speak the nra while a russian national who plotted to infiltrate the nra and other political organizations in 2016 waits to be sentenced inside a federal courthouse. ken delaney joins us now from outside court. ken, we're talking about a woman who basically prosecutors say was a spy for the russians. >> well, they don't accuse her actually of spying, hallie. her name was maria and she came here as a college student and conspiring to act as a russian agent and to fail to register with the attorney general. prosecutors say she was not a spy in the traditional sense, but she was trying to infiltrate republican party circles and absolutely right. the national rifle association. and she even co-hosted a trip to moscow involving some senior nra
officials back in 2015. she was working on behalf of a handler a russian central banker but the defense has a starkly different view of this case. they argued that she was simply a naive college student. they say she did break the law but her motives were sound and just trying to improve russia/u.s. relations. the prosecution by contrast brought the counterintelligence official who may or may not testify today say she was essentially a spotter. she was trying to help the russians recruit assets and she was dangerous to u.s. national security and the things she did are very similar to what the russians tried to do with the trump campaign both before and after the election. so, prosecutors have asked for 18 months in prison for butina and served nine while awaiting sentencing. the defense has asked for time served and they want her to be deported to russia essentially immediately after this hearing. the hearing is under way now and they're arguing about the sentencing guidelines but bottom line, hallie, starkly different
view between the prosecution and the defense in the courthouse behind us. >> stay close to the camera. when the judge's decision comes down, we'd love to have you back to update us on what the deal is. on the same day she is sentenc sentenced, the president is praising the nra ahead of his speech next hour. the nra is getting stronger and stronger and having their support has been vital to, make america great, again. the president's visit comes at a time when the nra is facing a series of investigations into its operating practices. i'm joined with executive director of guns in america "guns down how to beat the nra" and alexi and carol are back with me, as well. one of the most powerful groups in politics. how do you expect that to happen? >> already the nra is really in crisis. the piece is just an example of
what was the extent of the relationship between nra leaders and this woman who was trying to make connections between the russian government and trump and powerful leaders within the nra and how is it possible that sophisticated leaders within the nra didn't know that the group that she had set up to promote gun rights in russia, something that putin opposes is kind of a real legitimate organization. and there's actually an investigation about whether or not the russians used the nra to funnel dollars into the trump campaign. >> all of that said, do you think any of that would erode support for the nra? >> the nra support is already eroding. i think what happened after parkland is the center really shifted on this issue. by that i mean several things. you saw 40 companies break ties with the nra and saying we are no longer going to offer special discounts to the nra and two large insurers flee the carry guard program which is really going to be a cash cow for the nra and then in the midterms, we
saw dozens of lawmakers who took money from the nra lose their seats. at the same time -- of course. and at the same time, the number of gun owners is shrinking. so, there's a real membership problem for the nra and americans are now embracing much bolder solutions for reducing gun deaths. things like gun licensing and registration and buybacks. this is a train that is moving, but the nra can't stop. >> alexi and carol, you have a president sitting in the cabin on air force one headed to go speak to this convention where he will give a full throated, vigorous, not just defense, but cheerleading session for this organization. which i think does show how much power it still does have when the president is able to use his power and throw his weight around like this. >> i think a certain part. but i think they were a huge factor of him getting elected in 2016. he really loves thinking and
reliving the 2016 election and any chance to go back to a room full of people who love him and cheer him. igor is exactly right. the nra is toxic. when trump was elected it was like they're having a moment. they felt emboldened and the man they wanted got elected in the white house and gun owners felt like their second amendment rights weren't and an nbc news poll for almost two decades americans have a net favorable view of the nra. in 2018 right before the midterms not only did these folks lose their seats and i'm pretty sure but haven't checked the nra since then, they removed their ratings from the congress which is a direct acknowledgment from the organization themselves that they were politically toxic. >> not just nbc news the ap is out with some polls showing the number of americans who think gun laws majority think it should be the
case and this is up from where it was in 2017. >> that has been the case for some time and congress has not managed to pass anything or do anything. still a lot of lawmakers and politicians who, you know, are operating in a space where they don't, are going to lean heavily on this issue in part because much more of a voting issue for republicans than it has been for democrats. and, you know, whether or not that shift is going to happen kind of remains to be seen. but in terms of trump, i mean, he's going to go there today and act like he's speaking to his base. i mean, in his past speeches, he has become president to the nra and it's a whole rally, it's the wall, it's everything. so, we're going to see much more than just, you know, him talking about how great the nra is. >> thank you for coming on set. much more to come including from robert kraft to harvey weinstein. the two major hearings playing out right now.
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learn more about aarp medicare supplement plan options and rates to fit your needs. oh, and happy birthday... or retirement... in advance. we want to take you now to two big court hearings happening at this moment. harvey weinstein is at a manhattan courthouse. you can see him walking in last hour in new york city. the judge just ruled that the
media is not allowed in to today's hearing. a hearing to decide whether prior bad acts and uncharged crimes ared a m ed d ed admiss trial. so that's one. but we're also watching what is happening in florida. lawyers for robert kraft are in court showing him during a prostitution sting should be used as evidence against him. tammy is outside that courthouse in west palm beach. tammy, what is the latest? >> hey, hallie. things got under way an hour ago and already been contentious. the defense has come out and say they intend to susubpoena 30 people. sometimes you don't have 30 people in a murder case. the big issue today is the video. video that shows robert kraft engaged in a sex act. how this video was collected and stored. robert kraft came out and pled not guilty. he issued a statement saying he is truly sorry for what happened
and keep in mind, if this video is released and it does show robert kraft engaged in a sex act, most likely, it will go viral. it will get millions of hits. this will not only be embarrassing for robert kraft, it will tarnish his reputation. one thing to keep in mind, hallie. the nfl is largely silent on this issue, but if the isvideo is released, it will take nfl to take some sort of sanction against robert kraft. hallie? >> tammy, thank you. now to some dramatic, a quarantine at universities in l.a. everybody trying to stop the spread of a measles outbreak. president trump this morning reminding people, get the vaccine. health officials are trying to get a handle on the largest number of measles cases since the disease was eradicated more
than two decades ago. let me get right to molly hunter out at ucla. tell us where you are and what's going on. >> hallie, good morning. we are outside of a building called franz hall. this is one of the buildings that the infected ucla building had gone in to. as soon as they were notified by the l.a. department of health officials here and at cal state l.a. contacted every student and faculty member that may have come into contact with the student. again, this student went into there and the quarantine is still in place. as soon as they contacted everyone. hallie, they needed to see proof of vaccination. they all got, i'm sure you did, as well. two shots when we were younger. if they didn't have proof of that or go to a lab and get proof of that, you were quarantined. most of the quarantines here were 24 to 48 hours and some will be up to a week. that's what university officials
are doing. county officials are trying to figure out where else these students may have been. so, did they go, you know, out to eat. did they go into a park? schools are like petri dishes. exactly like the primary schools or elementary schools because everyone uses the same bathrooms and gyms and libraries. that's what's happening at ucla that's what county fl ay office doing. the cdc is going also into overdrive. they are at a campaign to get out the word that vaccines where the cdc director was tweeting up a storm. he said the cdc continues to encourage parents to speak to their family's health care provider about the life-saving benefits of vaccination. the cdc also encourages local leaders to provide accurate and scientific-based information to counterinformation because, hallie, they say it is happening because of misinformation and they want people to know that those vaccines work. >> molly, hang tight for a second. we have that sound bite from the
president as he was on his way to indianapolis talking about this very big issue. watch. >> we have to get the shots and the vaccinations are so important. this is really going around now. they have to get their shots. >> the president pretty clear there and aiming, molly, a message at so-called anti-vaxers. people who are refusing the vaccines for various reasons. when it comes to this quarantine, how many students are we talking about and specifically where are they physically now? where are they being quarantined, if you will. >> at ucla they're being quarantined on campus and ucla has said they told parents and students, they will take care of these students while they are on campus. let me give you those numbers. at ucla it is 76 students and 9 faculty and at cal state it is 71 students and 127 employees. now, across the state of california, hallie, 38 cases confirmed, but most of the cases we heard about nationwide.
there are 695 across 22 states. most of those cases are actually in new york. 390. and it's so interesting, the president, the cdc, the surgeon general all hitting the exact same note. one of the stats that i saw this morning that i found so interesting was that 90% of people unvaccinated will get infected. that's shocking, hallie. it sounds like if you're not vaccinated, make the call. call your doctor. if you're not sure, go get the booster. it will not hurt. >> molly hunter in los angeles, thanks for staying on top of that story for us. we appreciate it. coming up ahead, a new federal court ruling that might have a major impact on a 2020 swing state and why republicans are promising to take this thing all the way to the supreme court.d to jumpstart sales. build attendance for an event. help people find their way. fastsigns designed new directional signage. ...and got them back on track. get started at fastsigns.com.
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some side effects can lead to dehydration, which may worsen kidney problems. i discovered the potential with ozempic®. ♪ oh! oh! oh! ozempic®! ♪ ask your healthcare provider today about once-weekly ozempic®. quick programming note. stay tuned at the top of the hour, congresswoman actual city gcity gab bard is sitting down with craig melvin are. and a big decision will affect the 2020 elections. the ruling that some of the state's district lines were drawn unconstitutionally by the party in power, republicans, to favor the party in power,
republicans. in other words, they were unconstitutionally jerry man kerred. the judges are ordering state lawmakers to redraw the district lines. but what if we told you the lines on a map have already had a huge impact on the state? and may have had something to do with requethe flint water crisi which killed at least 12 and made many more sick? a new documentary which premieres this weekend, slay the dragon, argues they are connected. they are trying to show gerrymandering is not some obscure local thing. here is a sneak peek. >> i think flint woke people up. just sitting and watching like these politicians just so blatantly disregard the will of the people. you have these officials who feel untouchable, who feel like they can't get unelected because they designed and rigged a system to make it that way. >> joining me now, katie, who as
we saw is featured in the film. she is the executive director. and chris, thanks for being on. we talked about the idea that the documentary is making the argument that gerrymandering goes well beyond just local issues. you try to use the flint water crisis as an example. talk us through that. >> what happened in michigan is that politicians were able to pass legislation and just do things that ignored what was going on the ground and not respond to flint for many, many years. it was a terrible tragedy, it was allowed to unfold. and you can trace it directly back to gerrymandering. >> katie, you saw what was happening in your state and you said, listen, i'm going to take on gerrymandering. this was back in 2016. here is a clip of that. >> i wanted to have some way to come together and start fixing this. and stop accepting that things
are corrupt. in this age of the internet, are you so connected to like these great examples of people who start off on something and it does work sometimes. and so i think that i thought, you know, i'm going to throw it out into the world. >> so you did on to facebook, right? tell us more about the grass roots sort of program solution that you came up with and how that went through the system. >> yeah, so i made a facebook post that literally said hey, i want to take on gerrymandering in michigan. if you wand you want to help, l know. not thinking that it would lead to amending the state constitution. but quickly i saw you that lot of people were actually frustrated with the same thing, so we started organizing online. we didn't even meet in person for months. but took the skills that we had from our day jobs and applied them to how do we talk about this issue, what does it looks like to write constitutional language, who you do we gather the sirgt signatures. and how to talk to millions about what it means pchb and it
was absolutely incredible. we had over 5,000 people day to day dedicating their time, energy, money for free to try and do something to just make our state more fair for everybody. >> and your proposal ended up passing in 2018, but to even get it on the ballot as the felt him explai -- film plainexplains, you hado to the supreme court to get it done. so what does that say about the forces? >> especially when i started this, it feels kroeoverwhelming many dark sources out there are trying to suppress the will of the people. but when you did keep showing up, when there were thousands of us, that is when we could stand up to the millions spent by few people trying to spread misinformation campaign about us, trying to bring us up to the supreme court. and i'm really proud of our michigan supreme court judges who wr who ruled on the basic law instead of party politics. you don't always know if judges
will be part is an or n will be partisan or not. so you hope they are not. >> and explain the name, slay the dragon. >> it goes back to katie's group. they used that as a logo very early on. seeing them at work, seeing how katie was galvanizing a whole state inspired us to take that as the name for the film. and really bring that to other states as well. because what you are seeing in michigan, you are seeing in wisconsin, you are seeing in pennsylvania, north carolina. it is not just one state. and it is something that people all over the country are becoming more and more aware of and need to do something about. >> chris, katie, thank you both for joining me here. really appreciate it. good luck with the tribeca film festival this weekend. president trump speaking on his way to indiana this morning. one thing he mentioned, charlottesville, defending his response to the race riots. something that joe biden made
front and center in his campaign. >> you look at what i said, you will see that that question was answered perfectly. people were there protesting the taking down of the monument of robert e. lee. everybody knows that. >> he's not backing down. >> we've never known him to back down. >> very rarely. >> and it is interesting because joe biden is seemingly getting under his skin in a way that no other 2020 candidate has. and the president has an opportunity to correct the record on this and he is not because he doesn't actually care about thinking about the morality and the larger issue that happened and that was represented by charlottesville. >> likely not the last time that we will hear from the president on this. we want to wrap up now with what our sources are saying. and you are digging in with some of your sourcing on 2020 and team biden. >> yeah, we've seen a lot of joe biden. we'll see a lot of him going forward in the next few weeks. but i'm told that his strategy is basically to barn storm the early states, to be out there
for the next month, to try to stay disciplined and not get too much into the fray and really just disappear forker down on d prep. they think that is an important moment for him. so while we're seeing a ton of him right now, they have their eye on that debate and how he will perform there. and really want him to, you know, kind of step off the trail a bit and focus on that. >> and it's been a while since he's been on stage. he will be on "the view" talking with meghan mccain. and she has talked about her relationship with the former vice president and his relationship with her late father. >> and they share the loss, you know. we've seen the two of them have an emotional moment over obviously the former president trump lost his son, his wife, his daughter. and she lost her father. and they have bonded over that. and we've also seen buyseen bid
somebody who is willing to say kind things and maintain relationships with people across the aisle. >> and speaking of debates by the way, joe biden prepping for that, what are you hear something. >> the democrat party has made a number of rule changes for the debates. but democratic activists are now working behind the scenes to sort of pressure the dnc to almost fundamentally change the way that the debate questions are asked. they want to be a bottom up open debate situation in which audience members actually submit questions and the moderators have to pick like the top 30 or so. and that is to sort of give more regular people as the source i spoke to said a voice and the actual questions being asked rather than the networks or the dnc themselves. >> regular people. all right. thank you for coming on. that does it for us. i'm running over to the white house. but for now, craig melvin picks
it up in new york. >> hey, have a great weekend. good friday to you. craig melvin here. a live picture right now from the national rifle association convention in indianapolis, that is where president trump will be delivering his third keynote address just moments from now. before he left the white house last hour though, the president sharing a message for the 2020 democrats about his own youth. first though, controversy and former vice president joe biden wasting no time finding each other on the very same day the democratic frond rt runner announced his white house bid, anita hill say his amends did not go far enough. we'll talk all things 2020 including a conversation with one of the candidates,